About Harlan

Just a dude living in Dallas.

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Mississippi on My Mind Tonight… #Gordon

I’m from Mississippi. I was born and raised in the Mississippi Delta (“The Most Southern Place on Earth” as in, characteristically Deep South) and went to one of the best public high schools in the US in Columbus before heading to Vermont for college (I went to Bennington, for the record).

The state is constantly glossed over in so many ways. I get it has a low population, little industry, and is stuck in 1950. But as another hurricane comes to shore (Gordon), I’m thinking about my home state tonight.

Clarksdale Mississippi

I grew up in Clarksdale

Just wanted to share a few thoughts.

The Mississippi weather I know

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Dallas Meetup 9/14 – And Any Interest for AUSTIN Meetups?

Out and Out is hosting another Out for Miles frequent flyer meetup in Dallas, this time at Komali on Fitzhugh and Cole, right off Highway 75.

This one will be next Friday, September 14th, at 5:30pm – just in time for a fantastic happy hour! I made this one on Friday evening per a few requests. If you’re in the Dallas area, feel free to join!

dallas and austin travel meetup

See you next Friday at Komali for the next Out for Miles meetup

I also want to gauge interest for a potential Austin meetup. I was thinking of having one in early or mid-October. If this sounds fun, please leave a quick comment. I’ll try to organize it as soon as I’m done with FinCon!

Out for Miles event details

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Buy a Coin for $1,400 – Earn Points + $50 Cash!

Chase Ink Business Cash50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points
• $0 annual fee• $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
• Earn 5X Chase points on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at office supply stores and on internet, cable and phone services each account anniversary year

• Earn 2X Chase points on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants each account anniversary year

• Excellent 5X categories and best-ever offer right now
• Compare it here

Yay! I’m opted-in to this deal which happens at exactly 12pm Eastern Time on Thursday, September 6th, 2018.

It’s through PFS Buyers Club, which I’ve written about before.

The Palladium coin costs $1,387.50 + $4.95 shipping – so your total will be $1,392.45. PFS Buyers Club will pay you $1,443 once you complete the deal, for a profit of $50.55 – on top of the points you earn.

If you’re looking to meet minimum spending on a card, this is a simple way to do it!

 

pfs buyers club

Get ready to buy this coin and make $50 on Thursday

This one is going to go quick, so hurry if you can do it!

Buy through PFS Buyers Club and make $50

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Get 4% Cashback for Sporting Events, Theme Parks, & More With This Card’s Unusual Category Bonus

Let’s talk about this new Capital One Savor card. It has:

  • A $500 cash sign-up bonus after meeting spending requirements
  • 4% cashback on dining and entertainment
  • 2% cashback at grocery stores
  • 1% cashback everywhere else
  • Learn more here

I dug into that entertainment category and realized how surprisingly broad it really is. It includes:

Buying tickets to a movie, play, concert, sporting event, tourist attraction, theme park, aquarium, zoo, dance club, pool hall or bowling alley. Also, making purchases at record store and video rental locations.

Some of those things are pricey! And saving 4% could add up quick.

capital one savor review

I freaking love Sleigh Bells (look them up!). You can earn 4% on a HUGE number of activities with Capital One Savor

The dining category is wide, too – it includes nearly any place you can get a meal, snack, or drink. But I’ll keep my Chase Sapphire Reserve for those purchases.

If you’re LOL/24, looking for a nice sign-up offer, or spend a lot on entertainment the card easily pays for itself. And could be worth keeping long-term.

Let’s look at some numbers.

Capital One Savor review

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GIVEAWAY: Enter to Win a Basic Pass to FinCon 2018 Next Month (Worth $600+)! 🎁

Join me at FinCon 2018 next month!

For my birthday weekend next week, I’m giving away a Basic Pass to the event which is September 26th through 29th, 2018, in Orlando!

The entries begin today at 5pm Central Time and end on August 22nd, 2018, at midnight Central Time! 🎉

FinCon 2018 giveaway

Wanna go to FinCon 2018? I’m giving away a Basic Pass!

Right now, this pass is selling for $599 + fees. So if you win, you’ll save $600+, plus you’ll have a ticket to the BEST personal finance event around. I went last year in Dallas – and will attend this year, too. So if you win, you’ll see me there! 👋🏻

This pass gives you full access to all the standard events.

See how to enter below!

FinCon 2018 giveaway

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Get a Year + 3 Months of 0% Interest (Including $0 Balance Transfers!) With This Amex Card

0% APR intro offers are common, especially for purchases. And you can usually transfer a balance from another card – but you’ll pay fees in the form of a percentage of the amount you transfer. The more you transfer = higher fee.

So when I saw a deal for 15 months of 0% interest on purchases including NO fees on balance transfers, that caught my attention. Then I realized it was with an actually useful Amex card – with a decent welcome bonus. It’s the Amex EveryDay card – learn more here.

Offers like these aren’t as exciting as getting tens of thousands of bonus points. But they can give you a lot of breathing room – especially if you need to plan for a big purchase, or catch up to avoid paying hundreds in interest fees. In this case, for well over a year.

amex everyday balance transfer

I know I’m gonna need a new HVAC system – to the tune of $6,000 – in the next couple of years

I’ve taken advantage of similar offers in the past. And this one would be a great way to consolidate some balances. Especially if you’re over 5/24.

Amex EveryDay balance transfer offer

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For Advanced Players: The Citi ThankYou Premier 60,000 Point Offer Is Easily Worth $900

Dang, I just checked my credit file, and it looks like I closed my last Citi ThankYou Premier card in June 2017. I still have my Citi Prestige card open (and can’t wait to see how they refresh it this month).

According to Citi’s rules, I’m not eligible to earn another bonus on a ThankYou card because I’ve opened OR closed a ThankYou card within the last 24 months. But man, if you’re eligible to apply for this offer, there is absolutely no reason you shouldn’t hop all over it – especially if you’re over 5/24.

I have some FOMO about this offer. Because this offer is an easy $900 toward travel.

citi thankyou premier 60000

I use Citi ThankYou points all the time – including for flights to Belgium to stroll the gorgeous river that runs through Bruges

Here’s my expert analysis. 🧐

Dat Citi ThankYou Premier 60,000 point offer tho

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Is It Worth Getting (or Converting to) the Chase Ink Business Preferred Just for 3X Plastiq Payments?

Update 8/19/18: 3X on Plastiq payments with the Chase Ink  Business Preferred stopped working on 8/16/18. So the method below doesn’t work any more. I’m glad I kept my trusty Chase Ink Plus after all!

There’s a bit of a known secret about the Chase Ink Business Preferred card – you earn 3X Chase Ultimate Rewards points on ALL Plastiq payments (that is, the ones you can use a Visa card for).

I currently have the old Chase Ink Plus card (no longer available) that earns 5X at office supply stores, and on cable, internet, and phone service.

But month after month, I find myself spending way more on Plastiq payments than on “office supplies” or my internet bills. I’m heavily considering converting to the Ink Business Preferred to get that sweet 3X. When I run the numbers, I know I can earn more Chase Ultimate Rewards points this way. But, I’m afraid:

  • Chase will change the 3X any second now
  • Of losing the Chase Ink Plus card – once I convert, I can never go back

Is it worth a risk long-term for a short-term gain? Ah, isn’t that always top of mind with this hobby (and everything, really)?

chase 3x plastiq

I’ve had the Chase Ink Plus since it was a MasterCard… but if I convert, it’ll go the way of my Blockbuster card: SO TOTALLY OVER

Along the same thinking, would it be worth opening the Chase Ink Preferred to earn 3X on Plastiq payments… for as long as the gettin’s good?

Chase 3X Plastiq payments

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Did Fidelity Just Become the Best Investment Bank? 4 New FREE Funds!

Very cool news from Fidelity.  There are 4 new total market funds with ZERO management expenses and NO minimums to start investing.

Plus, they’ve slashed fees and minimums on several other funds.

I wrote about the best IRA accounts and which banks let you start investing right away with a single $1. What’s cool with Fidelity is you can pair your IRA with the Fidelity Visa, which earns 2% cashback on every purchase. Then sweep the cashback rewards into one of these free index funds. The card is free to have – so it’s literally free money to invest into free funds.

fidelity zero index funds

Fidelity just made a bold move with 2 FREE funds

Everyone should have an IRA account. Here’s more info on Fidelity’s new mutual funds.

Fidelity Zero index funds

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CityPass: Save up to 50% on Popular Attractions in 13 Cities

citypass savings

CityPass is a service I personally recommend to peeps when they stay at my Airbnbs and ask for fun stuff to do around Dallas.

Within Dallas, a $49 adult CityPass includes 4 attractions. Two of them are set. And you get to pick the other two. In this way, you build a little package for yourself. It’s fun, and saves you money when you travel. The Dallas package (for example) saves 40% on the 4 places you visit.

citypass savings

I loved spending time at the Dallas Botanical Garden as part of my CityPass ticket

The CityPass tickets filled up a weekend with places I’d been meaning to visit for a while.

CityPass has deals for 12 US cities and Toronto. If you visit a place on the list and want some fun touristy things to do, check what’s included for that city. They also have discounted tickets for kids and some cities have theme parks, aquariums, and much more to choose from!

CityPass savings

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LAST DAY: $499 FinCon Passes – This September in Orlando!

Update 7/31/18: It looks like the $499 price is going strong because of a “Summer Sale”! I’d still say to act ASAP if you’re interested!

Looking for inspiration, truly great networking opportunities, and a ton of personal finance information in one jam-packed 4-day event?

I attended FinCon 2017 in Dallas. As soon as it was done, I immediately registered to attend Orlando 2018, though I didn’t know how I’d fit it in at the time.

Flash forward to now. In 2 short months, I’ll be in Orlando for a week of CardCon, FinCon, and maybe even Disney World (when in Rome, right?). 🏝

Last year’s FinCon was a turning point in my own financial development. Plus, I got to meet some of my favorite bloggers in person (Paula from Afford Anything, Chonce from My Debt Epiphany, and Summer from Mommy Points) – and so many other knowledgable, inspirational peeps.

This year’s conference will be in Orlando at the Rosen Shingle Creek hotel from September 26th through 29th, 2018. Today is the last day to lock in a basic pass for $499. As of tomorrow, the price jumps to $599. So if you’ve been on the fence, now’s the time to get the best deal! 

fincon 2018 orlando

Spend a few days delving deep into finance at FinCon this September

Plus, I’ll be there! 🤑

FinCon 2018 Orlando event information

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8 Easy Tricks to Earn & Redeem Chase Ultimate Rewards Points

This one’s for my friends who say, “I never earn enough points to get a travel reward,” or, “Points are useless once you have them.”

The truth is you don’t have to invest a ton of time into learning how to use your points. You can do well by using 1 or 2 tricks to earn and redeem for travel.

And if you do that, you will still come out way ahead of most people.

I used Chase Ultimate Rewards points to stay in San Francisco this April

These “tricks” require very little finesse – just that you pay attention. Perhaps now is a good time to form a habit loop?

Even if these methods are ALL you ever learn, they’re an incredible place to begin. And once you’re comfortable, you can build from there – baby steps.

4 ways to EARN Chase points

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